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Vietor 7, Us 7, Calaveras 4, Torres 3, El Camino 2, Eir 2, Epa 1, Hypochlorite 1, Sodium Hypochlorite 1, Puc 1, Embarcadero 1, Moran 1, Alameda 1, Flushing 1, City 1, Korea 1,
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  SFGTV    [untitled]  

    March 14, 2011
    4:30 - 5:00am PDT  

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advance to be done, maybe this is something that would be for june or july or whenever that is. i do not want to suggest too far down the road, because i hear what you are saying, we want to be considering these projects up front when they come on line, but i think it is a big conversation, and i think there might be more that could be done on the staff side to address commissioner moran's concerns, the triple bottom lands -- lens. vice president moran: if, in the summer, we were able to have the preliminary work done that would allow was about a discussion, that would be fine. if it were going to take that long, i would suggest putting some market -- markers out that
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these need to make sense, and it may well be that in the summer, we will decide they did not make sense, but at least it is a marker in a place to start talking about it. >> i do not want to get us into a position by setting artificial sites by having limits on what we would have for the projects. we do not know what they're going to be. carefully, and not starting arguments with people that are unnecessary. we do not know what they are. there are some that will be less expensive. but it might avoid flooding in people's homes. others are more productive sounding because there is more avoidance of waste water where storm water, but no one cares, so there are a lot of things -- avoided a waste water or storm water -- avoidance of waste
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water or storm water. again, i do not want to set artificial sides because solar projects are more expensive and wind -- to set artificial sights because solar projects are more expensive than wind. vice president moran: the projects that are most difficult to deal with and that you are not supplying something and trying to figure out how to deal with it, so the measures are tougher, and i would expect that to be harder. >> there are things that are very expensive that you would not do but we have chosen to do, and i just want to make sure we do not get into some strange conversation that blows up in our face, for example. vice president moran: that is
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not an objective. on the other hand, i do not want to avoid the fundamental projects. president vietor: yes, so maybe we can at least work towards it. what some of these markers might be, and bring it back. great. thank you. we appreciate that, commissioner torres. any other commission business? next item, please. secretary housh: the next item would be a report from the manager. >> the first is an update on calaveras. you approve the calaveras dam replacement project, and it gave us authority -- you approved the project. they did file an appeal on the calaveras dam eir, and that will
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be before the board budget committee tomorrow and before the full board next week. it has several components. i will try to give you an update on those. the first is that we will be paying $2 million. the $2 million would be to reimburse them for lost revenues for additional expenses because of the work being done over there. in some cases, it is about not having as many school groups go to that park area as they used to, to very large areas, like where there is a bridge, and when it was dry in the summer, they used to drive across is, and now that it will be wet, they cannot do it, so now, they have to build a bridge in alameda, so this would give them $2 million to pay for things. the second thing is that they do not want to have half of their staff working at the
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headquarters with the traffic and everything, so it will be giving them space in the courtyard, and we will be putting aside $50,000 towards a trailer -- so it will be giving elsewhere. the third is that we have been in a month-to-month lease with the park district -- it will be giving them space elsewhere. the fourth is that they do not have a possible water system -- potable water system. it is hodgepodge. there is not a potable water area, and part of this is that we will provide them with a potable water source, and they
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will withdraw their challenge to the eir, and that will be before the board tomorrow. president vietor: a couple of questions. do they then become a customer of ours? >> we are not exactly sure how it is going to work. they may become an untreated water customer, and we would tell them how to treat it on- site, or they may become a treated water customer. we would reimburse them $30,000 per year for the purchase of water. president vietor: so if you could just keep us posted and let us know if they do become a customer? >> apart from our treatment -- the dam. president vietor: the $2
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million, where does that money come from? >> the project account. commissioner: so from the taxpayers. >> and the ratepayers. commissioner: is this being built because there is water there now? >> there are two places where we cross the creek. one is a way that staff has used to cross in the creek. we are not sure that they absolutely need that. they could drive around and use the bridge that we are doing. it is a much more simple bridge. just for their trucks for some time during the year. it costs about $500,000. that is the point. commissioner: it is wet.
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>> that has been a major part of the discussion around calaveras dam, that it has been dry for many, many years, but we will have a wet creek, which will hopefully restore the fisheries. commissioner: ok, so it is hard to do when economists -- when it is wet. much clearer. >> another is about an employee be hired back in 2009, so i thought i would bring it to you. the newspaper does not typically give the full story. i am sure most of you recall. so i wanted to walk for the process of hiring, reform, and the speculation for reasons why he would apply. in 2009, he called to ask if
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there was work that we thought he would be eligible to do at the puc for a short amount of time, we checked wham.com and there was something. -- and we checked around, and there was something. we told him to apply for that position. just for you to know, we have had to go back and look, and we have hired about 70 people at the puc that would have project worked anywhere from two weeks to two years. usually, the process for hiring someone to do this temp work is fairly simple.we wanted to makes properly and efficiently done for him. what that means is he applied for what is called a registry. a utility specialist. they have to put in a resume,
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make sure they are qualified, go to the resources department. there were 12 people on the registry. 3 replied they were interested. two showed up for an interview. he was selected. he worked for about five weeks for us, and then the job was terminated because the job had been done. he was paid about 13.-- $13,000 for about five weeks of work, which is what a specialist makes. related to another property, the mayor of the area earlier than this, she had wanted a dog park, actually, that would use some unused land there, but in talking to korea and driving around her area, there were a number -- but in talking to her and driving around her area, there were a number of pieces of land. another was a property we have in el camino.
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it does not really front in el camino, and they were working through a general plan update for her area, and whether it is housing in the area or something else -- so that is the work that we would typically hire a consultant for that we could do this with a city staff person also, so that is what that man was hired to do. he did some research, visited the sites, did a variety of things, and issued a report for puc parcels. management said they were happy with the work. there is a pair of the speculation for why he would be interested -- there is apparently speculation for what he would be interested. i wanted to discuss the general issue, because it is one that
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will likely come up, and it is the question of buying back retirement credits. i am concerned that it could be viewed as breaking the rules. our retirement system in the city is not as straightforward as you would imagine. for example, when i started with the puc, i was temporary. back then, there were some people who stayed their entire 25-year career and never became employees. typically, many, many employees were involved, like bus drivers or custodians, and when there were smaller numbers, they just hired them. once he became a permanent employee, you could buy back the time -- once you became a permanent employee, so i could start buying back my seven years. the civil service list, i was not eligible for being in the
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retirement plan for those seven years. in the 1990's, the world's changed. we were then told that we should not have -- the rules changed. anybody after six months went into the retirement system, so there are thousands of employees who have been buying back their time since then, because they were not eligible originally for that time, and they can buy it back for appropriate work. they had done the work. they just were not eligible to buy it back. some were originally not eligible. that was changed in 2001, and so, it did not give them any additional years' service. if anything, what he was interested in doing was being able to get credit for the time that he had actually served. again, i am not sure that is
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what it is, but i am assuming that that is what the newspaper article which be about, and in my view -- that is what the newspaper article would be about. i am happy to take any questions. commissioner: are these more appropriate in a closed session as opposed to a public session? >> i do not think we have litigation risk here, because it is not on the agenda, if you ask questions, then the general manager should respond to them outside of the meeting instead of a long discussion on something that is not agendized. commissioner: is is a personnel issue? >> i do not think it is a personnel matter at this time. i think it is more a public
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relations issue. there is no dispute about your ability to hire temporary employees or if this is what the issue is about, eligibility and the retirement rules, that would be something that retirement would deal with. commissioner: i will have to recuse myself from any discussion, is what i am concerned about. >> from a discussion point of view, because this is not a agendized. it was really an information item to provide background -- because this is not agendized. president vietor: my understanding is that this was an information item, because there might be an article appearing. the idea was to be informed about the nature of the article, and i think if the article says
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something or reveals something that requires further conversation, perhaps we can have it on the agenda for a closed session? commissioner: there would be additional issues raised? >> i do not presume that. i think the issues i've heard about are just those. the questions we have gotten from the press is was he employed and what did he do, and that is it. commissioner: ok. president vietor: thank you. >> the next item is a sodium hydrochloride update. >> thank you. president vietor, commissioners, good afternoon. i am with waste water.
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there was some news in the last couple of weeks, so i am here to give you an update. if this is not what you buy it at your store, -- this is not the bleach you buy at your store, and it has a big role. it protects public health. however, its primary use for us is disinfection. disinfection of drinking water and also the treatment of water. it is also used for odor control in our waste water collection system. so it will be this last piece that i will be focusing the discussion on today. this was question a lot in the
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media, so i will talk about that in one piece. i should note that it is one of the many methods that we used to combat odor in waste water. so where do we use this? on the charts year, about 50% of the sodium hypochlorite is used for disinfecting water. about 30% is used for disinfecting and treating waste water, and the remaining amount is used for over control -- odor control. it is not the only chemical we use. we also use peroxide and a ferriss solution -- ferous --
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ferrous solution. they are cite specific. this is basically from where the odors are coming from. you want to know what this costs. that is what you are looking at there. while the total chemical addition has gone down, you will note that for sodium hypochlorite, it has actually increased, and in the next few slides, i will show you y. -- why.
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we are not just using chemicals. we are also using other methods. in the elevated ventilation stacks, these are sights specific. -- site specific. they are on the embarcadero. this is why we chose it, get it out of people's way. it would not work everywhere. it would not work at one of our facilities, because in one area, there is a lot of vertical development, multilevel condos, and it would affect the second floor and so on and so forth. the middle picture, we have spent a lot of money to talk about this, money every year cleaning sewers and inspecting sewers. this also helps to control odors
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and involves flat areas. on the bottom right is one of our pioneering areas. this also helps us mitigate odors. around the southeast plant, we use a chlorination method. within that neighborhood, in very close proximity, and in the sewers there. we are also pirating and costly testing new products. -- we are also piloting and constantly testing products. more biological solutions, and two of those i have listed their -- there, including an
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enzyme. what we found is that they were not as effective. we use just as much per day to help solve the odor problem in the area. that we monitor and track, but it has not delivered what the manufacturers claim, and you can imagine, in the last couple of weeks, we have been inundated with vendors claiming that they have the magic bullet, the solution to solve all of our problems in regards to odors, and we are looking carefully at those. i, myself, have gotten one dozen calls. we are looking to see if, indeed, and they are going to work for us and at what type of location.
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the landscape, although we are a city, it is still changing for us. what you see on the picture is just to show you that i went to hundred 80 in mission creek, baseball fans -- i want to show you that at 280 and mission creep, baseball fans -- what you see there -- and mission creek, baseball fans -- what you see there is an encroachment on our property. there is also a dog park immediately adjacent to the pump station. what does this mean for us? it means we have to adapt. we must adapt. what does that mean? we use chemical additions and
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engineering solutions. these engineering solutions, we scrub the air, which we do at other facilities, also, all over the southeast. so looking at the future, we recognize the development of the program workshops, and odor will always be an issue in my shop, so you adopted a level of service. commissioner: you mean in your facilities, not your shop. >> exactly, all of our facilities. we are going to be able to achieve that through a series of methods, a variety of them, long-term engineering solutions. maybe we can get more flow to get to the treatment plants.
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flushing options. the auxiliary water supply system. that may be something we can do, use in our sewers. the one question that kept coming up, are we dumping pollution into the bay? absolutely not. "thou shalt not dumped into the bay any residual -- dump into the bay any residual or any bleach." we must dechlorinate it, and we also treat it with something else. teh -- the fish have to be able to live in the effluent in what
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we are putting in the water for 24 hours, and a certain parts per million is a violation in the insights -- in the mine of the -- in the opinion of teh e -- the epa. gaseous chlorine, we moved away from that. safety for the residents near there, safety for our employees, much easier to transfer. sodium shp -- hypochlorite is what we are using.
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we piloted that technology b 19. we are going to be looking at that as one of the alternatives for disinfection of waste water in our future, and with that, i will take any questions. president vietor: commissioner torres? commissioner torres: no. 1, we are looking at a policy to not release any unleashed dogs. do you see any potential impact on the dog bark? -- dog park? >> i will have a difficult time commenting on that, because i have not seen that. commissioner torres: i just wanted to ask whether or not you are looking at that. is this the only dog park around our facilities?
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>> waste water, it is the only one. >> we have a lot of cities and a lot of reservoirs' that have space around them where people walk their dogs -- a lot of reservoirs that have space around them. commissioner torres: when you say that the fish have to live for 72 hours, what does that mean? >> they are extremely sensitive to chlorine, so that is why we use the particular species, to check to make sure that there is no chlorine. commissioner torres: these species are not in debate, they are in a laboratory somewhere? -- these species are not in the bay? i appreciate you're being very emphatic about the fact that there is no dumping of bleach in
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the bay, but how do you neutralize the chlorine? >> there is a channel. when it comes out of that, we measure it. how many parts per million? every day, the operator has a target. "today's target is --" it comes back from the channel. it is down to one, so he has to go sit with another chemical -- he has to dose it with another chemical. commissioner torres: all right, thank you. president vietor: i have a follow-up for that. the chemical used to neutralize the chemical used to neutralize it, does that then go into the